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Lagoonal stormwater detention ponds as promoters of harmful algal blooms and eutrophication along the South Carolina coastAuthor(s): Alan J. Lewitus; Larissa M. Brock; Krista A. DeMattio; Susan B. Wilde
Source: Harmful Algae, Vol. 8: 60-65
Publication Series: Miscellaneous Publication
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DescriptionIn the rapidly urbanizing coastal zone of South Carolina, intensive landscape maintenance and turf management are significant sources of nonpoint source pollutant loadings. The best management practice of choice for stormwater in this region is wet detention ponds, the majority of which are brackish lagoons. Typically, stormwater is piped directly into the ponds, but ponds have limited capacity for processing pollutants. These eutrophic brackish ponds are "hot spots" for harmful algal blooms (HABs)-over 200 blooms from 23 different species were documented over the last 4 years, many associated with measured toxins, fish kills or shellfish health problems. Because these ponds exchange with tidal creeks, they are potential sources for HAB dispersion into adjacent estuaries. Also, flux measurements indicated that groundwaterwas both a source of nutrients to the ponds and amechanism for transporting nutrients from the ponds. These findings suggest that manmade ponds as presently designed along the SC coast may contribute to estuarine eutrophication and HAB prevalence. A summary of HAB occurrences in SC lagoonal ponds from 2001 to 2005 is presented, and a project is described that simulates the effectiveness of constructed wetlands as a supplementary best management practice designed to process stormwater and groundwater and remove nutrients prior to entering wet detention ponds.
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CitationLewitus, Alan J.; Brock, Larissa M.; Burke, Marianne K.; DeMattio, Krista A.; Wilde, Susan B. 2008. Lagoonal stormwater detention ponds as promoters of harmful algal blooms and eutrophication along the South Carolina coast. Harmful Algae, Vol. 8: 60-65
Keywordsbest management practices, constructed wetlands, harmful algal blooms, lagoonal estuaries, stormwater detention ponds
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